Questions tagged [osr]

OSR stands for "Old School Renaissance." It is an umbrella term encompassing pre-D&D 3.0 versions of Dungeons & Dragons. The various older editions are closely related enough that an answer for one is often applicable to other editions.

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8
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1answer
94 views

How many spells does the Magic-User have in their spellbook in S&W Core?

In Swords & Wizardry Complete, the rulebook states that [...] a beginning Magic-User’s spellbook contains as many of the eight basic first level spells as the neophyte character can know [based ...
0
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1answer
142 views

Firing a relativistic kill missile at a god in an otherwise medieval world: How to Adjudicate? [closed]

My players have come up with a (deviously clever) solution to an impossible quest to kill a particular god-like being: accelerate an unobtanium missile at it to relativistic speeds and smash it into ...
7
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1answer
205 views

What changes are needed to maintain balance if all classes use the same XP table in BX D&D/OSR?

What balance problems are created by house-ruling B/X D&D (or derivatives) such that all classes advance at the same rate (i.e. they all use the fighter's XP-level table)? What fixes can be ...
13
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1answer
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How do I learn to run games in the OSR/old school D&D “Way”, as an experienced 3e/5e DM?

I'm a seasoned D&D 3e/5e DM, and I'm interested in learning how to run an old-school game. The trouble is, the 3e/5e "way" is trained into me (e.g. I'm very used to calling for skill checks to ...
3
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1answer
191 views

When was LotFP grindhouse edition published?

I have some trouble finding bibliographic information for Lamentations of the flame princess grindhouse edition referee book, or the set as a whole. The pdf of the referee book contains no ...
11
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1answer
424 views

Is there a formula behind S&W White Box classes?

I intend to create my own classes for my current Swords & Wizardry campaign. I've read White Lies Admin Toolkit which deconstructs their own classes, but when I tried to run the same formulas to ...
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2answers
859 views

Who or what first said to “don't name monsters, describe them”?

There is an interesting GMing principle that more or less states that a GM should only ever describe monsters, and let the players name them. There may also have been mention of creating a sense of ...
9
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5answers
573 views

Is there a term for OSR games which are not retro clones?

The Old School Renaissance / Revival boasts many retro clones, especially of various D&D editions: from Swords & Wizardry for OD&D, through Blueholme for Holmes Basic, to OSRIC for AD&...
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4answers
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Megadungeon: How often to restock?

I am running an episodic megadungeon using Pathfinder rules, with XP only for found treasure (1 GP = 1XP). Now, I know to restock my dungeon after the PCs traveled an area. I have a restocking system ...
5
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1answer
165 views

Where exactly do the tunnels and vineways in Maze of the Blue Medusa connect?

In Maze of the Blue Medusa the description of room 186 indicates that there is a tunnel to room 50. In room 50 there is no mention of such a tunnel. Is the tunnel there and how easy is it to find? ...
13
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6answers
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Remembering to add tracks and signs of wandering monsters

When refereeing OSR sandbox game (using whatever rules; key parts are player-driven sandbox play with neutral referee, and rules as negotiable representation of fiction) I use random encounters: ...
5
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1answer
115 views

Is the Number Appearing entry based on the stats of the monsters?

For humanoid monsters in the Basic and Expert sets there is a clear pattern of creatures with the same number of Hit Dice appearing in smaller numbers in random encounters if they have better armor ...
37
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13answers
11k views

How do I get around players losing interest during mapping?

For the past couple months, my D&D hack game has been experiencing the same persistent issue. While all my players seem to have fun during the exploring/debating/combat/social parts of the game, ...
2
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1answer
1k views

What is the logic behind the interactions of positive and negative energy? [closed]

Positive and negative energy have a rather idiosyncratic relationship. While ostensibly opposites, creatures and spells that make use of these energies interact in ways that do not seem to follow a ...
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2answers
3k views

What is the most reasonable conversion rate for a 5e “Gold for XP” house rule?

I am thinking about using a OSR-like XP for Gold rule for my next 5e campaign. Instead of handing out Combat or Quest XP, I want to use the following rule: Players can purchase XP / a level when ...
3
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2answers
845 views

How can I tell if an adventure will work with Scarlet Heroes?

The Scarlet Heroes Quickstart provides "an overlay for your favourite old-school game to make its adventures playable for single PCs," which sounds pretty great (I'm interested in twosies, but turned ...
5
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3answers
713 views

How well are low level PCs able to defeat high level NPCs in B/X D&D?

For a Basic/Expert game, I want to populate the campaign area with important and influential NPCs, who are doing their things independent of the player's activities. The goal is to have the players ...
3
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2answers
720 views

How to decide if traps in OSR play should be obvious? [closed]

Obvious traps emphasize interaction with the traps, which is often interesting. Hidden traps make unexplored regions of a dungeon far more dangerous and reward careful play and cunning, as players ...
17
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2answers
1k views

What is the average number of sales of adventures (modules) and adventure settings (hexcrawls) for OSR publishers?

I came across this post on the blog Monsters & Manuals about the campaign setting Yoon-Suin and its units sold since being published. It's interesting to read for someone who's entertaining the ...
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1answer
291 views

How to design an introductory adventure heavily based on exploration and interaction with the environment? [closed]

Tower of the Stargazer and B1:In Search of the Unknown are two of my favorite introductory modules. The main reason is their focus on exploration; in particular, they feature extensive possibilities ...
3
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1answer
160 views

What is the difference between Turning Undead and Automatically Turning Undead?

The S&W Complete Rulebook, at page 42, states that you roll 2d10 and consult the Turning Undead table for the result. Then, interpretation is offered as so: If the number on the dice is equal ...
3
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1answer
132 views

Where do the treasure types used in the books Teratic Tome and Lusus Naturae come from?

These books, as an alternative to the randomized treasure types and tables found in White Box through at least AD&D 1E, have a guaranteed amount of certain types of objects, and specific names for ...
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3answers
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What are the differences between Labyrinth Lord and Lamentations of the Flame Princess?

I'm planning to use OSR modules like Caverns of Thracia, Keep on the Borderlands (and new material also as Vornheim) and so on in a open table project I'm running. I'm not sure whether using ...
3
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1answer
236 views

How to decide the level of new monsters? [closed]

I'm running a D&D sandbox (with my own variant of D&D, of course, but it is reasonably compatible with old versions of D&D and various retroclones), and I use several adventure modules and ...
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0answers
175 views

How to get players to accept DM rulings? [duplicate]

Some time ago I stopped running/playing modern RPGs like Pathfinder and 4e in favor of White Box S&W. I like S&W because of the bare-bones nature that leaves many things up to my discretion as ...
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3answers
2k views

How to determine PC genetics in D&D for the purpose of creating 2nd generation PC's [closed]

I remember watching "The Dungeons & Dragons Experience" and one of the people featured in the documentary mentioned how him and his friends had developed a way to blend and randomize attributes of ...
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1answer
2k views

Does D&D 5e have rules for gaining experience from gold?

I have read in some of the Old-School Basic D&D incarnations that characters are awarded more XP for the gold value of the treasure they find than they gain by defeating enemies. I like how this ...
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5answers
2k views

Good source book for wilderness/road encounters?

I'm a GM and like for my players to have several interesting encounters when making long road journeys between cities. I especially enjoy when the party has options of how to deal with what they ...
16
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5answers
3k views

How do I remove a poorly-designed rule without my players feeling cheated?

(This question is inspired by by Neil Slater's answer here: What are the acceptable limits for questions using the probability tag?. Other related questions are: Rules for increasing ability scores in ...
9
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2answers
364 views

Seeking a specific D&D retro-clone

I'm fairly sure this game exists, but I can't figure out for the life of me which one it is. I know it's not Darker Dungeons, Labyrinth Lord, or LotFP, because I just checked them before posting this. ...
34
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17answers
4k views

How to handle character death in adventures with save-or-dies

I am currently running an LotFP adventure using D&D Next, the amazing Better than any man. In SevenSidedDie' s great answer to a previous post of mine he touched upon philosophical differences ...
6
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1answer
3k views

Conversion of LotFP (OSR) monsters to D&D Next Final Playtest rules

I am running an LotFP adventure for my group; we play using the Final Playtest ruleset of D&D Next. LotFP is part of the old school renaissance, and James Raggi (the creator) writes that it ...
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5answers
18k views

Are there rules for increasing ability scores after character creation in Basic D&D?

Are there any rules (house or otherwise) for increasing ability scores after character creation in Basic D&D or any of its retro clones? (Other than magic items or wishes.) When we generated ...
12
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1answer
583 views

Is OD&D faster than D&D 3e at low levels, and why?

I've never played OD&D, AD&D or retro-clones, but fans of those games often say they run much faster than D&D 3e and 4e, especially to resolve combat. However, it's my experience that D&...
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2answers
2k views

In calculating Basic D&D monster experience, what's a special ability?

I really like my good ol' Moldvay Basic D&D. Every once in a while, it's missing a rule I want, and I make it up. Then I feel clever. Sometimes, though, I want to know what everybody else did ...
14
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2answers
2k views

Why can't a Cleric use a sling?

So by the book 1st Edition AD&D, clerics can't use a sling. Other than game balance (it essentially means that other than the odd thrown hammer clerics have no ranged weapon ability which further ...
4
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1answer
344 views

How does damage outside of combat work in Carcosa?

In Geoffrey McKinney's old-school setting and ruleset Carcosa, hit dice are handled unusually. If you already know how, skip to the actual question, below. Otherwise, here is a refresher: a ...
12
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1answer
553 views

At what point does a trap on a lock spring?

So a thief finds a chest which is trapped and locked (though he knows neither of these things at this point). He fails his find traps roll and assumes / risks that it's not trapped. At what point ...
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8answers
1k views

What happens in adventure locations between adventures?

I'm running a sandbox with several adventure locations that have been visited, but not entirely cleared, and ones that have been left open for new residents to arrive. I'm looking for a method for ...
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4answers
3k views

How can players learn the nature of magic items?

I'm running a sandbox campaign with Adventurer Conqueror King System (essentially Moldvay-Cook Basic/Expert D&D). My players are starting to find probably-magic items during their expeditions and ...
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1answer
310 views

Where can I get a copy of Monsters of Myth? [closed]

I was wondering where I could get a softcover copy of the OSRIC book, Monsters of Myth. Any help would be great.
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2answers
4k views

Where did exceptional (“percentile”) strength come from?

I run a B/X game for a few guys, most of whom have only played 3E before. It leads to a lot of talk about the change in power level between basic and 3E. One of the things that came up was the ...
7
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2answers
649 views

How can I do conversions from OD&D to nWoD?

I'm running a Changeling: the Lost game and I'm going to be running an OD&D (clone) module soon (Death•Frost•Doom) and I was wondering if anyone had tips on converting the crunchy bits to nWoD. ...
63
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6answers
14k views

What's the deal with alignment languages?

In early D&D, there was the concept of an "alignment language." The original "little brown book" D&D says only: Law, Chaos and Neutrality also have common languages spoken by each ...
1
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2answers
887 views

Spell to change the appearance of minions?

In old-school DnD, what spell would a wizard (or illusionist) use to change the appearance of his minions? For example, if a wizard had a bunch of bugbear henchmen, what spell would she cast to make ...
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4answers
3k views

What kind of rulings predated ability or skill checks in old school D&D?

As I grow more weary of 4E and more nostalgic for my days playing 2E, I'm spending more and more time reading the old rules and the retroclones. I'm having a great time. One of the things that I ...
51
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3answers
10k views

What is the purpose of old-school D&D class level limitations?

When I played 1E and 2E, racial level limits was one of the first rules we decided to ignore. We decided that it would prevent us from playing (say) an Elven fighter for as long as the party might ...
13
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4answers
3k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of oldschool D&D combat initiative?

Old D&D and D&D3E/4E treat initiative and combat order differently like so: D&D 3.5 / 4E: All participants roll individual initiative, once only at the start of combat. Each player takes ...
19
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4answers
1k views

Was Original D&D an Historical Wargame?

At the dawn of roleplaying, the Castle & Crusade Society and Lake Geneva Tactical Studies Association (LGTSA) focused on Medieval Britain, and produced the Chainmail tabletop wargame rules with a ...
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6answers
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In early D&D, why would chainmail ever be preferred over plate armor?

In early D&D, both chainmail and plate armor were considered metal armor, and to slow the wearer to 60' per turn. Chainmail cost 40gp, and plate armor 60gp. Their encumbrance was 400 or 500 coins ...